I created this page to verify my application to Impact Radius. Impact Radius is an affiliate marketing company that was founded in 2008 by people who helped found Commission Junction and Savings.com. In 2016, Impact Radius received a 30M investment from Silversmith Capital Partners. This page has the meta tag ir-site-verification-token=1273406783. This proves that I control the site.
If I understand the IR application correctly; This page will be viewed by affiliate managers who review my site and that I should use it to explain how I intend to use affiliate ads on the site.
My Affiliate Marketing Strategy
I started the Community Color Project back in 2000 in an effort to undstand the ways that the Internet impacts local communities. In this project I develop an open directory and open calendar for communities in the Mountain West. My primary markets are Arizona, Colorado and Utah. I have about thirty geodomains such as Denver Color, Cheyenne Wyoming dot US. The directories link to all the web sites I can find in a community.
I monetize the project by joining affiliate programs of large companies with local facilities. I also run banners for affiliate merchants at the top of the directory.
I fulfill FTC requirements by placing a disclaimer near all affiliate links. I put a little blue strip on all banner ads to identify that the banner is an advertisement (see banner above). Adding these disclaimer dropped the click through rate of my ads about 40%.
Impact Radius requires that I receive approval for all sites with affiliate links. To fulfill this requirement, I will do the following. I put an information page on the site iRivers.com. The links on the local directories will point to page on irivers. The page links back to the local directories. I present the page for Target as an example. The page has a target banner, an article about the history of Target and an FTC disclaimer. The page was designed to convey information about Target. It probably won't result in sales.
In 11/2017 the directories had about 30,000 links. About 2,500 of these were affiliate links. I should point out that 80% of the affiliate programs I have joined have gone dark. Only about 20% of the affiliate programs I belong to appear to be actively paying affiliate commissions.
My program is in the "buy local first" category. Most of my visitors are simply looking for the location of the local store. The online sales rate is extremely low. I average about 1 sale for every 400,000 page views. My average commission per sale seems to be about $2.00. Affiliate programs barely cover hosting costs.
Email and PPC Ads
The sites do not engage in PPC advertising, nor do I send out emails.
The conversion rate of my program is extremely low. Most affiliate managers auto reject my affiliate application. Since the goal of the program is to explore the community, I usually create a page for the merchant anyway. I put the links for merchants that reject my application at the bottom of the directory.